How often should lifting equipments be subject to thorough examantions?
Thorough examination of lifting equipment must take place every 12 months - or every 6 months if the equipment is used to lift people. Any accessories used in lifting should also be inspected every 6 months. These are the minimum requirements, where there is no formal 'examination scheme' drawn up by a competent person.
The competent person may impose a more rigorous examination scheme, for example when the lifting equipment:
- is used in extremes of temperature (eg in a foundry or a freezer)
- is used in a potentially corrosive environment (eg seafront)
- is subjected to particularly heavy use
- could lead to potentially catastrophic consequences if it failed (eg resulting in multiple deaths or the release of dangerous material)
In some cases, the period between thorough examinations may be extended under an 'examination scheme', where either deterioration will be very slow (eg when lifting equipment is only very occasionally used and stored in dry, non-corrosive environments); or when it is one of a very large number of identical items - where a sampling and inspection scheme may be more appropriate.
In addition to these scheduled examinations, equipment will require a thorough examination following:
- any accident or dangerous occurrence
- any significant change in conditions of use
- the replacement of any parts that are subject to thorough examination
- any long periods of inaction